Social Sinners: In the Shadows (Jia’s review)

Title: In the Shadows (Social Sinners #2)
Author: T.L. Travis
Publisher: Encompass Ink
Release Date: August 17th 2018
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 202 pages
Reviewed by: Jia
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 3.8 stars out of 5


For Ricky “Stoli” Branson, the stars were on his side. Social Sinners was headlining their first sold out US tour. Radio stations across the states were playing their songs, and he’d won the heart of the man he loved.

Everything was going great, or so he foolishly believed…

When an accident has them burying one of their own and leaves another fighting for his life, Stoli questions his beliefs. Or lack thereof.

“Have faith,” his mother tells him. But how can you have faith in something that threatens to take away your only reason for breathing?

In the Shadows started off where the first book left off, I was happy to notice. I loved reading Stoli’s reaction after the confession. I love the friendship – the brotherhood – the guys share between them, and their banter amused me -reading about it felt like mentally eating chocolate cake. I also love the closeness Joey and Stoli have with their families and I really like following them on tour and everything it entails. Not to mention I’m happy to have Stoli and Joey together. For me the book never had a dull moment. The accident added a sense of sadness and grief that I could clearly feel across the pages.

However, having been told the story so far in Behind the Lights from Joey’s point of view -first person narrative -with this second book being all Stoli’s perspective I felt a sense of loss. I really wanted to get a little bit of Joeys’s side as well because it felt like he was somewhat of a stranger now. Another thing I still feel is lacking are the characters’ physical descriptions and even ages for some of them and the story would have felt more alive if there had been more friends mentioned for example, than the members of Maiden Voyage after the accident and also the crew on the road with them was rather faceless except for Rob the driver/roadie, Sal – who stayed mostly in the shadows, and of course Easton.

The book could have done with some more editing as I found the writing at certain points felt a little like rattling off a list of to do’s, leading to the story feeling rushed at times. It felt a lot less fast-paced than the first book which is good and the story also feels like it has more meat on the bones. I liked how we got to go with them on their tour.

Having read the first book, the continuation In the Shadows offered a warm familiarity with the characters that I enjoyed and I’ll happily read the next book as soon as it comes out next year. I recommend this story to those who likes romance stories about musicians which include their lives as musicians as well as the romance.

Social Sinners Series

Buy Link Amazon Global Author Link GoodReads More Author Reviews

Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of In the Shadows provided by the author in exchange of an honest review.


Reading, to me, is as close to an addiction as one can come without crossing the line... completely. I read a lot, and many different genres. I'd love to hear if my reviews helped you, so feel free to comment :)